Greater Greater Washington

Frumin, Silverman were your top choices on education

Residents who voted at Let's Choose DC, a project of Greater Greater Washington, DCist, and PoPville, gave top marks to Matthew Frumin and Elissa Silverman for their views on the future of education in DC.

Matthew Frumin slightly edged out Elissa Silverman in a close finish. John Settles placed third, followed by Patrick Mara, Perry Redd, and Paul Zukerberg much farther behind.

71% of voters gave positive reviews to Frumin's answer, compared to 70% for Silverman's. Silverman had more people rating her answer "very persuasive"38% versus 30%but also fewer people thought her answer "fully" answered the question46% versus Frumin's 65%. 14% of voters said Silverman did not answer the question, while only 1% had that reaction to Frumin's response.

Voters were very divided on Patrick Mara's response, perhaps not a surprise since he essentially said he didn't like the premise of the question and that it wasn't possible to really discuss education in the available space. 48% of people said his response "partially" or "fully" answered the question, while 34% said it did not at all.

Most (75%) felt that Perry Redd answered the question, but actually agreed with it less than anyone else's, with 65% rating it as unpersuasive or very unpersuasive.

Once again, we had no responses from Anita Bonds or Michael Brown. Brown also did not attend a DC for Democracy forum last night.

You can still vote on Question 4, about candidates' views on growth, until Monday night.

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David Alpert is the founder and editor-in-chief of Greater Greater Washington. He worked as a Product Manager for Google for six years and has lived in the Boston, San Francisco, and New York metro areas in addition to Washington, DC. He now lives with his wife and daughter in Dupont Circle. 

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It's especially sad that Brown and Bomds are not participating since they are likely the front-runners in the campaign, if nothing else than for their incumbent and quasi-incumbent status.

The cynic in me suggests that they aren't responding because they've written off readers of this blog as potential supporters. It's a shame since GGW is definitely one of the more engaging and responsible forum for DC's issues around. Do they have ideas of improving our schools? Who knows? Apparently, they can't be bothered to say.

by Adam on Jan 31, 2013 2:08 pm • linkreport

The cynic in me suggests that they aren't responding because they've written off readers of this blog as potential supporters.

I agree and have said that it is unfortunate. Like you, I believe that they've written off this blog as a source for potential supporters. Even though there is likely truth to their belief....they still shouldn't do it.

by HogWash on Jan 31, 2013 2:19 pm • linkreport

For its limitations, I think this project was a great idea, and we can see some early returns inasmuch as it has started to consolidate what was a very crowded field. Although I'm not optimistic about the end result when the city actually votes, eliminating vote-splitting and strategic voting dilemmas helps level the playing field.

by rusty on Jan 31, 2013 2:36 pm • linkreport

Basically, ditto what everyone above me said. Still, I really appreciate this project and hope you continue it as a regular practice for elections!

by Alan B. on Jan 31, 2013 2:41 pm • linkreport

It is a shame that Bonds has front runner status. Her responses at the DC4Demorcacy panel last night was underwhelming at best.

I wish the "media" would look at all the metrics before anointing candidates.

by Andrew on Jan 31, 2013 3:02 pm • linkreport

Mara seems to be cultivating an image as the education candidate by serving on the ceremonial state board of education, tweeting about all the schools he visits, and saying the word "education" more often than anyone else.

This "Let's Choose" issues survey is a brilliant way to get past all that and ask about specific policies and proposals. Interesting that in a "put up or shut up" situation Mara did not convince anywhere near as many readers as did Frumin, Silverman, and Settles.

Another sign that this is adding value is that I knew nothing about Settles before (still don't) but have been taking a serious look at him based solely on his answers to these questions.

I also know that I'm not even considering Bonds or Brown. They've disqualified themselves as far as I'm concerned.

by Ward 1 Guy on Jan 31, 2013 3:11 pm • linkreport

@Hogwash

I tend to agree. I am not voting for either Bonds or Brown. Having any connection to Marion Barry rules you out as far as I am concerned. I am getting damn tired of explaining to people just how it is that "DC" keeps reelecting Marion Barry.

Ultimately, while I very much enjoy this feature, my vote (and my wife's vote) will go to whoever we feel has the best chance to keep Bonds and Brown out of this seat.

by Kyle-W on Jan 31, 2013 3:33 pm • linkreport

Yeah, I've really been impressed with all of Settles answers. For me it's a toss up between him and Silverman. While I would love to see someone that could productively shake up the council, short of that I can accept someone who at least is likely to know how to get things done within the status quo.

by Alan B. on Jan 31, 2013 3:36 pm • linkreport

I tend to agree. I am not voting for either Bonds or Brown. Having any connection to Marion Barry rules you out as far as I am concerned. I am getting damn tired of explaining to people just how it is that "DC" keeps reelecting Marion Barry.

Yeah, neither am I but for different reasons. I don't make the guilty by default association because I think it unfair. Ironically, after years of being asked the "why Barry" question, I just try to guide them towards facts. That is, Barry keeps winning in one Ward..the one in which he lives..and his power influence has pretty much been isolated w/in its confines. So try that or a version of. I believe it'll at least stop people from asking or a minimum understand the substance of their own critique.

Agree w/W1G and Alan about Settles. Never heard of him (or Brooks) until this series but have been impressed by his answers. I also think that this series gives DAL political cover in the event GGW endorses.

I don't necessarily agree that the Council needs a shake-up. If you think about the days of Linda Cropp or then-Chairman Vincent Gray, the Council hasn't been a total bust over the years. The problem really hit the fan once Gray was elected mayor and NaviGate and other issues were conflated w/the Mayors performance.

by HogWash on Jan 31, 2013 4:06 pm • linkreport

RE: Comments Above

I think one of the best parts of Let's Choose is that it goes beyond *just* GGW (since I admit we're a touch of a wonkish crowd) and at least expands to a more common reach via DCist & PoPville... of course, between those three it's still pretty solidly the west half (generalising) of the city; and I otherwise agree that it seems the so-called front-runners have written us off.

by Bossi on Jan 31, 2013 4:49 pm • linkreport

It's neat to see how Frumin and Silverman compare, but in this case also how they differ in ratings: Frumin with high marks on fully answering vs. Silverman a bit mixed; Frumin with a stronger middle-ground on persuasiveness vs. Silverman with a bit more polarisation.

Zukerberg entertains me.

by Bossi on Jan 31, 2013 4:51 pm • linkreport

@Hogwash

That is exactly what I do. Explain how it is one very specific ward that keeps voting for him, and that the rest of the council basically considers him a joke. I do think think that guilt by association is fair here. If you were running from office, would you run on the coattails of your experience with Marion Barry?

by Kyle-W on Jan 31, 2013 4:54 pm • linkreport

I'm liking Settles and Frumin's answers so far. But ultimately I will vote for whoever can keep out Bonds or Brown.

by I. Rex on Jan 31, 2013 5:10 pm • linkreport

It's neat to see how Frumin and Silverman compare, but in this case also how they differ in ratings

Thought so as well. I'm really interested in the results from the most recent question...maybe it's #4?

Explain how it is one very specific ward that keeps voting for him, and that the rest of the council basically considers him a joke.

Good. Then if they ask why do they keep doing it just say, "the same reasons politicians around the country are reelected decades past their prime." It just happens.

I still disagree w/the guilt by association thing, especially in this case because whatever we think about him, Barry was the mayor of the city for a while and it's unlikely that anyone who has worked in gov't for a while, hasn't had to deal w/him on some level. Even Gray was criticized for having worked in Barry's administration. I think it unfairly targets long-time DC resident and puts them against newer ones. To put it this way, I wouldn't have wanted people to "not" consider Kaya Henderson a good choice because of their dislike of Rhee.

I'm not sure if you're asking whether I would run on Barry's time in office (which I consider running on his coattails) or whether I would accept an endorsement from him. If the former, then No, I'm not sure if anyone would do that. If the latter, then yes I would accept his endorsement and allow him to campaign on my behalf, especially if I'm running for the Ward seat. In fact, HECK YEAH! :)

Personally, I think the mistake people in W8 make is doing everything possible TO run away from Barry...and the results have been consistent.

by HogWash on Jan 31, 2013 5:24 pm • linkreport

Some Twitter chatter about BOEE money filings. I wonder how much this will impact the horserace factor of local coverage.

by William on Jan 31, 2013 6:05 pm • linkreport

That could be problematic... Thanks, William.

by Alan B. on Feb 1, 2013 8:36 am • linkreport

@Hogwash

Interesting perspective. That is fair that if you were in DC Govt in the 90s, you dealt with Barry. I agree, if you were running in W8, you would certainly need his endorsement (which is sad)

The new vs old residents is tough. The city was an absolute mess in the 90s, and I tend to think anyone involved shouldn't be around anymore. I am happy to vote in new candidates. This isnt POTUS, you don't need a dozen years in the federal government to be effective. I am happy to bring in new people, with some decent DC experience, who are interested in improving the city. Do I trust people who are associated with Barry to always do that? No.

Most recent example being the $100 million. He wants it spent. Will it get spent? No, because we have independent minded people who are able to realize that building back up our reserves and improving our credit rating will help the city much more long term than building another two buildings for affordable housing. Will Bonds vote with Barry here? Yes.

by Kyle-W on Feb 1, 2013 9:43 am • linkreport

I agree, if you were running in W8, you would certainly need his endorsement (which is sad)

I don't think it's sad as much as a fact of life. For example, Tommy Wells has the W6 vote locked down. If he ends up (heaven help us) being Mayor, don't you think his endorsement would have major sway over who might win? I believe so. This happens to be the way politics is ran in every corner of the country. So I don't agree that it's sad.

The new vs old residents is tough.

I don't think it's that tough. I wasn't a resident here in the 90's. But I also read enough about DC to understand that it, like other major cities during the 80's-early 90's were suffering from the rise of gangs, crime, drug use and saw the rise of economic disparity. Certainly, DC's "government" had its own unique issues but in no way was DC a mess solely "because" of its poor management. There was a confluence of factors. But yes, suggesting that no one who worked in DC gov't prior to 2000 is fit to hold office now is unrealistic. From what I understand, DC's most effective Mayor was Anthony Williams...who Barry appointed during this same exlusionary period. Did you distrust him? It is unfair to be as black/white about the issue and does add a lot of character to the anti-new/old debate.

He wants it spent. Will it get spent? No, because we have independent minded people who are able to realize that building back up our reserves and improving our credit rating will help the city much more long term than building another two buildings for affordable housing.

That's a fair point but that's why we don't have a council of One. Barry can have his own opinion that the city should use the money for something else and now place it in reserves. We're free to disagree. But FWIW, Barry seems to have taken the same approach as Adrian Fenty, who also used all of the city's surplus and did not place it in reserve. There are lots of things Barry does of which I disagree. But I don't decide to disagree w/things "just because" Barry does it. That part is unfair.

by HogWash on Feb 1, 2013 10:50 am • linkreport

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